Monday, August 13, 2007

Road Trip and Picnic

For now, I will just post a bunch of photos (with brief descriptions). I might add more writing later, but in the meantime it is probably best to refer to my sister's blog, Hermitologies, which has a pretty thorough account of both the road trip and the picnic.

I will begin with the photos from our trip to Kevelaer (in western Germany), even though the picnic actually took place earlier. It should be noted that it is surprisingly(?) difficult to take photos from the back of a little car traveling at high speeds. So, if the photos didn't turn out well, I have some excuse. Another point worth mentioning is that the photos were taken during our five-hour drive back to Berlin. No photos were taken on the way there, nor were any taken during our stay in Kevelaer (we were there from Friday afternoon until Sunday morning). Dreadfully negligent on our part, but such is life.

Anyway, first up are three pictures of a cooling tower, in chronological order. There were several other cooling towers along the way, but most (all?) were farther away. The cooling tower in the photo is not necessarily part of a nuclear power plant, by the way, but I found it slightly intimidating none the less. Part of the intimidating effect is due to the tower's size; the photos don't really show it, but the cooling tower has a decidedly looming quality. (Note: the first photo was taken by my sister)

Cooling Tower (from afar)

Cooling Tower

Cooling Tower (with power lines)

Next is a photo meant to represent several typical aspects of a road trip: the cars, the highway, the road signs, the scenic landscape, the vast sky, and . . . the unfortunate squished bugs on the windshield (i.e. the blurred smudges scattered throughout the photo).

On The Road

Our speed varied considerably during the trip, especially since we encountered mild to moderate traffic jams both to and from Kevelaer. The following is evidence that we reached speeds of at least 190 km/h. I don't think we went past 195 km/h, but I may be mistaken. Last year, we went up to 200 km/h. :o) It really makes 80 km/h look slow in comparison, even though that was about the speed we usually went on Canadian highways.


What follows is a belated photo of the Rhein (belated because it is actually one of the first photos I took). You can't see the river or the bridge very well (again, that's what comes from taking photos from a car). Ah well . . .

Crossing the Rhein

The next photo was taken by my sister. It shows one of the many lovely valleys we passed during one stage of the journey. There is something very pleasing about green fields, rolling hills, clusters of red-roofed houses, etc. Later on (or possibly earlier on), there were plenty of steeper wooded hills that had a broccoli-ish quality. Those hills were also lovely, particularly in the sun. With such scenery, I don't much miss the wilder greenery of Canada (especially since I prefer deciduous trees to evergreen trees).


Another photo of the pretty scenery (my photo this time):

German Countryside

Finally, a photo of a windmill. One comes across plenty of these in the German countryside. Often, there are rows of them -- towering white structures that, when unmoving, bring to mind "War of the Worlds." When seen scattered over the fields, they seem like machines left behind after some futuristic battle, or after the decline of a civilization.


Now for the picnic. It took place in late July. My family and the family of one of my uncles went to a nearby park to eat, talk, and play badminton. Some also played table tennis and soccer, while others (myself included) threw around a frisbee.

I don't really have much to say about the picnic photos, so I will just post them as they are.

Park Entrance (Fountain)



Carl-Zuckmayer-Brücke (from afar)


Tree Branches

Silhouetted Trees

That's all for now. I won't make any promises about the next post. I only hope the interval between posts will become shorter, not longer. :o/

Note: All photos were edited using Adobe Photoshop.


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